The one thing he liked most about the office was the chair. Cushiony, but firm. It felt used, but not worn out.

He hated the coffee, though. Didn’t stop him from drinking it.

“It’s been a while, hasn’t it, Raleigh?” asked Garrett Underhill, chief therapist for the San Angeles Police Department. He glanced at his PDA display. “Six and a half months?”

Raleigh Devrees didn’t care much for the therapy, either. Didn’t stop him from coming. When he needed it. “Seen the news? I’ve been busy.”

“Interim chief, yes, saw that,” Garrett said with a faint smile. “Congratulations, I suppose?”

“Good days and bad,” Raleigh answered.

“You’re here now, so…bad day?”

“Not great,” the chief agreed.

“They find that missing Wildfire player yet? What was his name? Bodette?”

“Bodean,” Raleigh said. “Still missing, as far as I know. The CIS spooks aren’t exactly forthcoming with information about their ongoing investigation.”

Garrett chuckled. “I’d ask how that makes you feel, but we both know that answer, don’t we?”

“Oh, I was fucking pissed the night this all went down,” the chief said. “Fit to be tied. Spitting Nall fangs. Now, though, I’m just…worried, I guess.”

“About?” the therapist prodded.

“Volstov and his thugs swooped in to grab that crime scene too fast for my liking. Y’know, like they expected it? Knew it was coming.”

Garrett raised his eyebrows. “Do you remember what happened the last time you were convinced a conspiracy was in the offing?”

Devrees frowned. “Just because I couldn’t prove it doesn’t mean I was wrong. Pettinjay was dirty. He was on the Vaxian clan’s payroll. They just tied up the loose end before I could get to him.”


The cop nodded, sighing. “I know how it sounds. I know what people will say. That’s why I’m keeping my mouth shut for now. I need to be certain. I want proof. That means getting close to the investigation.”

Garrett tilted his head. “How do you expect to do that?”

Raleigh gave a smirk and said, “Charm.”

By Brody

Leave a Reply